Bundaberg Migrant Settlement Services

Bundaberg Migrant Settlement Services (formerly Bundaberg Settlement Grants Program) has operated from the Bundaberg & District Neighbourhood Centre since July 2011 and offers a referral and advocacy service to the eligible new migrants within the Bundaberg area, Gin Gin and Childers.

Bundaberg Migrant Settlement Services (BMSS) is a free service to those migrants who have arrived in Australia in in the first five years of their permanent residency here and hold a humanitarian, refugee or family visa. BMSS helps new migrants to settle in Australia through common sense advocacy and appropriate referrals. Funded by Department of Immigration and Citizenship, BMSS offers assistance to ease the settlement process.

Assistance can be in the form of: -

  • Help filling out forms,
  • help dealing with government departments,
  • referrals to groups and appropriate service providers .
  • general information concerning settlement,
  • advocacy,
  • skills recognition,
  • assistance with family violence situations,
  • education and training in the form of information sessions

An outreach service is provided to Childers and GinGin.

Patti can be contacted on (07) 4153 1614.   Our Client Service Charter is here

Bundaberg Migrant Settlement Services (BMSS) 2015–2017

About the BMSS

The Australian government recognises the role the community sector plays in the provision of settlement services for newly arrived humanitarian entrants and migrants.

Through the government’s National Compact with the not–for–profit sector, the government aims to find new and better ways of working together with the sector based on mutual trust, respect and collaboration. This is based on a shared vision, purpose, principles and aspirations.

Strengthening the BMSS

In recognition of the specialised nature of settlement services, the Australian government has strengthened the BMSS to enhance the quality of settlement services being provided to eligible entrants.

The outcomes of settlement services will also be aligned with the key measures of social participation, economic well-being, independence, personal wellbeing and connection to the community.

Aim of the BMSS

The BMSS is guided by the following overarching policy principles and BMSS providers will develop:

  1. Welcoming communities - Work in communities to support responsive local services, build capacity and community connections, and create a welcoming environment and opportunities for new arrivals.
  2. Connected individuals- Work with individuals through the provision of casework services to connect them to mainstream services.
  3. Connected government - Promote access and equity by playing a brokerage and advocacy role with government agencies on behalf of new communities.

In addition to this, targeted support will be provided for emerging communities to help build their capacity to assist in their settlement.

Through the BMSS, the government’s aim is to assist eligible entrants to settle, become self-reliant and participate equitably in Australian society as soon as possible after arrival. Eligible clients include:

  • humanitarian entrants
  • family migrants with low levels of English proficiency
  • dependants of skilled migrants in rural and regional areas with low English proficiency.

The delivery of settlement services

Supporting the ongoing nature of settlement services, the government will fund BMSS grants in 2015-17 primarily for the delivery of refugee and migrant settlement services and support for emerging ethno-specific communities.

Refugee and migrant settlement services are usually delivered by not-for-profit community based organisations, generally located in areas where people are settling. These organisations usually have strong links to their target group(s) and/or focus on working explicitly with migrant and humanitarian entrants and their communities. Funding will be for the following types of services:

  • casework or coordination and delivery of services
  • community coordination and development
  • youth settlement services.

In the absence of organisations in areas of settlement need or where there is insufficient capacity to meet the demand, consideration will be given to funding generalist organisations with the capacity to deliver settlement services.

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